Current Visiting Scholars
Muhammad Ishaque Fani, Ph.D. (drishaquefani at yahoo.com) is Associate Professor of International Relations at Bahauddin Zakariya
University in Pakistan. He is working on a book that will describe how religious radicalism emerged in madrassahs and mosques in Pakistan
since the 1990s. Previously, Dr. Fani has written on numerous topics including decentralization in the United States, US-China relations, US
and Russian views of the Kashmir conflict, and Pakistan’s
post-9/11 Afghan policy.
Past Visiting Scholars
Ifat Maoz, Ph.D. (msifat at mscc.huji.ac.il) a social psychologist and Associate Professor in the Department of Communication and Journalism
Alan Keenan, Ph.D. (akeenan23 at earthlink.net) was a Visiting Scholar at the Solomon Asch Center during the 2005-2006 academic year. With
funding from the United States Institute of Peace he is working on a book manuscript entitled Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea: On the
Politics of Human Rights and Civil Society Building in Sri Lanka. The book will examine the complex politics of human rights in Sri Lanka, with
particular focus on the difficult relations between the discourses of "human rights" and of "conflict resolution." From 2003-2005, Alan was a Mellon
Postdoctoral Fellow in Peace and Conflict Studies at Bryn Mawr College. There he taught courses on human rights, conflict, democratization, and
transitional justice. Before coming to Bryn Mawr, Alan spent much of the previous four years in Sri Lanka as a Visiting Fellow at the International
Centre for Ethnic Studies, Colombo. His field research, sponsored by a postdoctoral fellowship from the Asch Center, focused on the work of Sri
Lankan human rights groups and other local "civil society" organizations and the role their efforts played in attempts to bring about a negotiated
settlement to Sri Lanka's two decade old war. In addition to his academic research, Alan has also worked as a consultant for the Programme on
Human Rights and Conflict at the Law and Society Trust in Colombo and with the International Centre for Transitional Justice in New York. Alan
received his Ph.D. in political theory from the Johns Hopkins University, and has previously taught political, legal, and social theory at the Universities of California at Berkeley and at Santa Cruz, and in the Committee on Degrees in Social Studies at Harvard University. He is the author of Democracy in Question: Democratic Openness in a Time of Political Closure (Stanford Univ. Press, 2003), as well as articles in a number of academic journals and edited volumes.
Tina Kempin (tkempin at sas.upenn.edu) was a Visiting Scholar at the Solomon Asch Center during the 2005-2006 academic year. She received her doctoral degree in International Relations and International Law from the University of Zurich in Summer 2006 and is now on the faculty of Christopher Newport University in Virginia. Her interdisciplinary dissertation project (Ethnic Conflict and International Law: Group Claims and Conflict Resolution within the International Legal System) examines international legal approaches to ethnic conflict and conflict resolution. The examination of the problem of defining ethnic conflict and the analysis of the relevant international legal basis, especially in relation to collective rights such as the right of peoples to self-determination and minority rights, lead to the conclusion that the potential contribution of international law has not yet been fully realized in conflict research. Tina's dissertation describes how processes of ethnic conflict resolution can benefit from international legal norms, procedures, and institutions. In turn, she argues that international law can profit from findings of political and social sciences concerning the problem of definition of the terms "ethnic group," "peoples," and "minority." Tina received her M.A. in history, economics, and international law from the University of Zurich. She
worked as a research and teaching assistant for the Center for Security Policy and Conflict Research at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich, where she wrote her Masters thesis on the implementation of the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland. Tina was a research fellow at the Institute of Public International Law and Foreign Constitutional Law at University of Zurich Law School and was awarded the University of Zurich Research Grant for research and the completion of her dissertation, 2005-2007.
Shane O'Neill, Ph.D., was a Fulbright Scholar and Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Asch Center in 2005. He is a Full Professor of Political Theory at Queen's University in Belfast, where he is Chair of the 35-member School of Politics and International Studies. Shane studied at University College Dublin (BA in History andPolitics, MA in Moral and Political Philosophy) and subsequently for his doctorate at Glasgow University in Scotland. He was a member of the Department of Government in Manchester University, England, before moving to Queen's University in 1994. His research interests can be located at the interface between Anglo-American normative political theory and continental philosophy, particularly hermeneutics and German critical theory. In his
published work he has investigated a variety of critical approaches to social scientific research and has examined a range of questions concerning the
demands of justice and democracy under conditions of pluralism. His main project at present focuses on the normative dimensions of ethnonational conflict.
Adebayo Okunade, Ph.D., is Professor of Political Science at the University of Ibadan and Director of the University’s Centre For Peace and Conflict Studies (CEPACS). He was a visiting scholar at the Asch Center during 2005 as part of a MacArthur Foundation funded collaboration between CEPACS and the Asch Center. Dr. Okunade’s current research examines terrorism and counter-terrorism from the perspective of categorical moral imperatives. This study proffers some categorical political, economic and social imperatives for change and for the repositioning of Africa beyond merely “oiling” the economy of the North, thereby reducing its current status as a burden to the international system and making it a relevant partaker in globalization. Professor Okunade is also pursuing research related to Blair’s New Labour and the “Northern Ireland Question;” political conditionality and aid in Africa; and the laws
of armed conflict and modern warfare. He has written over 50 articles, chapters, or books bearing on issues of communal conflict.
Rotimi Suberu, Ph.D. is a Professor of Politics at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria. He was a visiting scholar at the Asch Center during 2005 as part of a MacArthur Foundation funded collaboration between CEPACS and the Asch Center. Dr. Suberu is coeditor of Federalism and Political Restructuring in Nigeria (1998) and author of Ethnic Minority Conflicts and Governance in Nigeria (1996) and Public Policies and National Unity in Nigeria (1999), as well as a number of articles on Nigerian politics published in both Nigerian and international journals. He was a fellow at the United States Institute of Peace in 1993-1994 and served as a visiting scholar at the University of Florida (1995), the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (1999-2000), and
Northwestern University (2002).
Florian Bieber, Ph.D. received his doctorate in Political Science from the University of Vienna. During the 2004-2005 year, he undertook a research project on institutional design in multiethnic states of the former Yugoslavia under the mentorship of Asch Center Director Brendan O’Leary. More information about Dr. Bieber's current work is available at his website: www.policy.hu/bieber
Amal Jamal, Ph.D., a political scientist and Associate Professor of Political Science at Tel Aviv University in Israel, spent a year in residence at the Asch Center (2002-2003) furthering his research and writing related to political communication; state building and civil society; minority politics and democratic theory; and Palestinian and Israeli politics.
Malathie Dissanayake, a psychology graduate of the University of Peradeniya in Sri Lanka spent two years at the Asch Center (2002-2004) as part of a post-baccaulaureate and graduate student visiting scholar program that brings talented overseas students to the Asch Center and the University of Pennsylvania for informal but structured programming in order to help advance their graduate-level studies. Previous participants include Libby Eaton and Yoesrie Toefy from the University of Cape Town in South Africa, and Nishani Samaraweera, also from the University of Peradeniya.
Sonia Roccas, Ph.D., a social psychologist from the Open University in Israel, spent a year in residence at the Asch Center (2000-2001) during which time she pursued her research program examining group identification, the management of ethnic identities, and the phenomenon of "collective guilt" (guilt associated with wrongdoing by a group with which the individual identifies). She also initiated and remains involved in collaborative research with directors at the Asch Center.
Gameela Samarasinghe, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and senior lecturer in the Department of Sociology at the University of Colombo in Sri Lanka, was a visiting scholar at the Asch Center for a shorter visit (one month) during 2002. During this time she initiated collaborative pursuits with the Asch Center's Director of Refugee Initiatives and also furthered her work on psychological distress and coping behaviors under conditions of protracted conflict.
exacerbation or maintenance of intergroup conflict).